Much like the Quarterback and Running back tiers, the number one Tight End is no surprise. Antonio Gates emerged as a top TE his second year in the league and has shown no signs of giving up his crown. Gates has been the top fantasy TE for the last three years with Marty ball and now he gets Norv Turner and his high powered offense to work with. Gates should put up double digit touchdowns again and may eclipse 1,000 yards receiving.
After Gates the tight ends really start to clump together and they are some guys who you could nab later that will give you almost the same value as the ones who are rated a little higher. Tight end is always a position that good value can be had later on in the draft if you miss out on Gates and this year is no exception.
Here are the Tiers:
Kellen Winslow Jr
Zach Miller (R)
Greg Olsen (R)
Now a shock maybe how low Jason Witten is on the list, but I think that Anthony Fasano will start to take away from his opportunities. Fasano will be entering his second year and he is great pass catching tight end. Alge Crumpler is also lower on this list than he has in the past, but I think the loss of Mike Vick will effect Crumpler the most. Joey Harrington will be the Quarterback and he likes to go to wide outs more than Vick did and Vick seemed to look Crumpler first, run second, pass to the wide out third.
Some guys that have moved up are Randy McMichael who was reunited with Scott Linehan in St. Louis. McMichael thrived under Linehan's offense in Miami and I look for him to have a nice rebound year. Eric Johnson went from big time TE in SF to the bench with Vernon Davis being drafted, but he has talent and he is in the New Orleans offense with a lot of good weapons around him. Owen Daniels, Daniel Graham, and Alex Smith could all have better years than some of the guys above them and you could get great value, but there are some question marks around them as of now.
These rankings are from the start of training camp and will progress towards the start of the season so look for more.